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Qantas confirms first non-stop Chicago flights

Direct services from Brisbane to Chicago, San Francisco officially unveiled

Marking the first direct link between Australia and the third largest city in the US, Qantas has officially announced it will commence non-stop flights between Brisbane and Chicago. 


Earmarked for an April 2020 launch, the new service will operate four times a week utilizing Qantas Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner. 


Image Qantas / Facebook


A joint venture with American Airlines, the new flights are still subject to approval by the US Department of Transportation (DOT), but were tentatively given the green light earlier this month, as reported by Traveltalk


Expected to go on sale in the coming weeks, the new service will save passengers flying between Australia and the Illinois city more than six hours of travel time both ways. 


It also gives Qantas customers access to more than 30 additional unique one-stop destinations from Australia - and total links to over 200 onward destinations from Chicago, Los Angeles and Dallas-Fort Worth. 


At around 16 hours and 20 minutes (14,326kms), the new route will be the fourth longest in the world and the national carrier’s second longest. 


On top of the Chicago announcement, Qantas confirmed it will be launching flights between Brisbane and San Francisco three times per week, also from April 2020 (pending approval). 


Joining Qantas’ daily Brisbane-Los Angeles flights, the two new services will add 170,000 seats between Australia and North America each year. 


Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said the new flights would give Qantas and American Airlines customers “unprecedented access”. 


“These new services will connect both Australian business travellers and holidaymakers with key centres of commerce, industry and culture in the United States,” Mr Joyce remarked, calling the announcement “fantastic news for Queensland”. 


Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the new routes would generate more than $150 million and 1,700 jobs for the state over the next three years. 


“As the world’s largest economy, the United States offers enormous potential for inbound tourism to Queensland,” Ms Palaszczuk stated. 


In other Qantas news, the flying kangaroo has announced that one of its new Dreamliner planes to be delivered this year will be named Longreach, to mark the carrier’s Queensland roots.


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Written by: Mark Harada
Published: 17 June 2019

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